The future Commander of the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) counter-terrorism task force, Combined Task Force 150 (CTF-150), recently visited the NATO Allied Maritime Command in the United Kingdom in order to gain an understanding of NATO’s maritime operations in the Gulf of Aden, the Indian Ocean and off the coast of East Africa prior to assuming command next month.
Commodore Brian Santarpia from the Royal Canadian Navy assumes command of CTF-150 on 4 December. Reflective of Combined Maritime Forces regional cooperation program, and in order to discuss coordination and interaction with NATO forces in the Indian Ocean, Commodore Santarpia stopped in the United Kingdom while en route from Canada to Bahrain in order to meet his counterparts in NATO and the European Union Naval Force (EUNAVFOR).
During the visit, Commodore Santarpia met with NATO’s MARCOM Deputy Commander, Vice Admiral Bruno Paulmier, and Chief of Staff, Rear Admiral Giorgio Lazio, before taking part in a round table discussion with NATO and EUNAVFOR staff.
“As Commander of CTF-150, Commodore Santarpia will be in close and frequent coordination with NATO and EU Naval Force warships in the region,” said Vice Admiral Paulmier. “This visit helped to build shared situational awareness and familiarization with NATO and EUNAVFOR operations that should pay dividends for all parties in the months ahead.”
Commodore Santarpia has experience with allied navies throughout his career, to include participation in NATO’s counter-terrorism Operation Active Endeavour while he was Executive Officer of HMCS Halifax, then assigned to Standing NATO Maritime Group ONE.
“The very nature of Combined Maritime Forces operations requires our Task Force to work closely with partners and allies in order to achieve success, and promote the conditions for security and stability in the maritime environment”, said the incoming CTF-150 Commander. “I very much appreciated the warm welcome of Rear Admiral Paulmier and his team helping us familiarizing ourselves with NATO and EUNAVFOR operations. Having the proper knowledge can only enable us to continue the good work completed by our predecessors.”